By Justin King
The US State Department has openly discussed shutting down RT, the Russian news network. Assistant Secretary of State Victoria Nuland was asked about the idea of shutting the company down at a meeting at the Brookings Institute. She said no, paying lip service to the Freedom of Speech, but citing RT’s limited reach as the real reason.
The incident goes to demonstrate exactly how much censorship exists in the United States. RT broadcasts a narrative that is undoubtedly pro-Russian. Now that the pro-Russian narrative is at odds with the Pro-US narrative, the government is willing to openly discuss simply shutting off American access to the network.
This isn’t the first time that RT was targeted by government officials. The Chair of the US Broadcasting Board of Governors equated RT to terrorist groups when he said:
“We are facing a number of challenges from entities like Russia Today which is out there pushing a point of view, the Islamic State in the Middle East and groups like Boko Haram.”
Why would such a question be asked of a State Department official to begin with? Because the US State Department is responsible for large portions of America’s propaganda efforts.
This is the United States of America. We are supposed to have a free press, but if you push a point of view contrary to the government’s, you’re likely to lose your broadcasting license. Regimes in the past held book burnings to remove unfavorable opinions from circulation. The US government doesn’t need to be so boorish. They simply remove the book from libraries or revoke the broadcasting license of the outlet that won’t read the government’s script.